dinner service

Mastermix Label Manager Richard Lee focuses on maximising on the early evening entertainment

DJs continue to explore new & exciting concepts to offer their clients. From Uplighting to L.O.V.E. Letters or Magic Mirrors to Themed Photo Booths there is always something new to showcase…but there is one thing that is often over-looked and can be offered so easily…MUSIC!

The most asked question from my client meetings is “What are you going to play?”. It immediately tells me that they are focused as much on the music as they are on anything else that is happening during their event and that allows me to offer them additional music concepts for the various parts of their function.

When a DJ booking is taken it’s usually to provide music from a certain start time to an agreed end time with something playing whilst guest arrive and during food service before the main party kicks off. If we take that a little further then we can start to explore music options to offer as extras including offering a unique music solution during dinner especially for the wedding market.

When I first began my career as a professional mobile DJ I had very little knowledge of dinner music…in fact it’s fair to say I was a bit lazy and would stick on any old album that I thought would work. As the years went by I realised the importance of music during food service and began working harder to create better playlists which eventually lead me to creating a range of music concepts that I have been offering my clients for several years with great success. By pushing the music boundaries slightly I have gone from a DJ who creates a background music playlist, sticks it on and lets it run…to a DJ who actually mixes the music live during dinner service.

I have several names for this concept with one being ‘Elegant Dining‘. It’s not for everyone of course but for the many clients who have bought into the concept it has proven to be a real talking point amongst their guests. Rather than put on some background music I create & perform sets that work throughout dinner service, progressively building until the food service is over and the main party begins. By being present I am able to connect with my audience much earlier during the event and change the music to suit…and charge an additional fee too!

So what is ‘Elegant Dining’? Well it can be anything you want it to be…it’s a concept…how you offer it is down to your sales skills when talking to your clients. DJs have evolved over the years and wedding DJs are now providing all-day services including Host/MC and of course DJ as well as a long list of extras to complement the main event.

Weddings have developed from the regimented-style that I remember in the early days of my career to more bespoke events where each wedding is catered especially for that client rather than the same formula. Many of the weddings I perform have opted for speeches before dinner service. This allows a smoother transition from dinner to the main party and with it the option to offer an ‘Elegant Dining’ set.

I recently help collate a new release from Mastermix – Classic Cuts 166: Elegant Dining that includes a selection of tracks that work perfectly for this type of concept. The album features a selection of well-known artists such as Adele, Tom Jones & Fleetwood Mac to lesser-known artists including De:Phazz, Pacha Massive & Waldeck which allow you to programme innovative sets for your audiences that feature en eclectic mix of cool, classy tunes.

Lower BPM tracks include:

These are excellent scene-setters before upping the tempo with tracks including:

Before taking things up another BPM level before transitioning into your main set:

By carefully mixing the content, and adding other tracks to complement, you can quickly build some exciting sets for your clients and offer your own ‘Elegant Dining’ concept. Try it…embrace it…play around with the tracks on Classic Cuts 166: Elegant Dining and add your own choices too…it quickly becomes addictive and pushes your music boundaries to new levels that can only benefit you and your clients in the future!

Classic Cuts 166 – Elegant Dining

30 of the coolest tracks for DJs to offer a unique music solution to their clients. Create an innovative playlist with tracks from De-Phazz, Air, Nightmares On Wax, Tosca, Fleetwood Mac & Miles Davis. All tracks are digitally remastered. Un-mixed.

Music For Food

Each mix has been carefully tracklisted & produced for you to programme them to play as part of your music selections for dinner service, buffets & other times when ambient music is required.A range of music styles make this collection a welcome addition to any DJs music library. Mixed.

Also take a look at our post focusing on After Dark, creating concepts that solve the problem of when the end the evening’s entertainment.